Favorite Icon, Full size
Album Review: Prisoner of the Shadows
Scott Shumaker
Cover image of the album Prisoner of the Shadows by Scott Shumaker
Prisoner of the Shadows
Scott Shumaker
1997 / Scott Shumaker
38 minutes
Review by Kathy Parsons
Prisoner of the Shadows is pianist/composer Scott Shumaker’s debut album. He calls his music “neo-classical/new age,” which is actually quite accurate, as his pieces use a lot of classical forms and idioms, and yet the sound is mostly contemporary solo piano. The title sounds very dark and heavy, but the pieces encompass a variety of moods and expressions. An attorney in Northern California by day and a musician in his free time, Shumaker brings an interesting perspective to his music. Mostly self-taught, he doesn’t read music and plays by ear, creating his pieces from fragments that “slide around” in his mind until they come together as pieces. I really like “Autumn Dream,” which is piano and (keyboard) cello. A haunting work that starts out with a simple piano intro that could be the sound of a gentle rain, the cello enters and brings a sorrowful counter-melody that really sings throughout the rest of the piece -very beautiful! “Forgotten Love” is also lovely in a quiet, pensive way. Accompanied by (keyboard) strings, this is a very elegant and touching piece. “Come Along” is much more light-hearted and buoyant. ”Medley In C Minor” is a bit darker and more melancholy, and is also very beautiful. The title piece, while not joyful, is far from dreary - more introspective and exploratory than gloomy. It could easily have been the result of a late-night session in solitude. Prisoner of the Shadows is a very interesting and effective debut.
January 20, 2003
This review has been tagged as:
Debut Albums
More reviews of Scott Shumaker albums